The Fraternity Man’s Guide to Derby Day Success

Though a cornerstone of American equine tradition, the Kentucky Derby can prove a stressful experience for horse owners and spectators alike, wrought with high social standards for etiquette, dress code, and cocktail consumption. To prepare brothers and other students planning on a trip to Churchill Downs, several NU fraternities teamed up with campus organizations including the Equestrian Club, Future Oil Billionaires of America, and the Daughters and Sons of the Confederacy to host a pre-Derby spirit week featuring daily mini-courses on the vital information attendees need to fit in on race-day.

Though The Flipside is still unsure how we missed out on an invite to the exclusive pre-Derby festivities, dressage champion, political pundit, and Flipside informant Rafalca Romney was in attendance, and shared the contents of her embossed vellum program of activities, printed below:

Monday Kick-off: How much seersucker is too much seersucker?

Panelists Chip M. Buckley and Mitchell von Helmsington III discuss just how much seersucker is appropriate in your Derby day ensemble. For instance, is adding a bowtie to your seersucker suit too much? You might consider a pink bowtie with whales for contrast. (Spoiler-alert: There’s no such thing as too much seersucker.)

Tuesday: How to pretend a mint julep tastes good

As a fair warning, that cocktail you’ll pay somewhere between fifteen and twenty dollars for tastes about as refreshing as a fifty-fifty blend of black licorice and Listerine. Learn from alcohol-related stoicism experts about the best techniques to avoid contorting your face in such a way that will give away you don’t regularly consume the southern elite’s beverage of choice, or have taste buds.

Wednesday: What manicure color is appropriate for my Lily Pulitzer dress?

For the ladies in attendance, the President and Vice President of Southern Trophy Wives Association will give a brief presentation on whether or not it’s best to try to match your polish selection your Derby frock or choose a complementary shade. Time-permitting, they may also discuss the pros and cons of just getting a French manicure instead.

Thursday: Hat Day!

Sporting just the right specimen of this iconic Derbywear staple is essential in garnishing your race-day ensemble with just one last dash of high-fashion zero-functionality supremacy.

Friday: How not to get your cousin pregnant while in Kentucky

You might think it’s impossible to inbreed when none of your other family members are, in fact, attending the Derby, but trust us, this mini-course is essential. Maybe it’s the juleps.

Saturday: Derby Day!

Get ready to apply all that you’ve learned as you prepare to hob nob with billionaires, heiresses, and business tycoons. When betting, remember to take every factor in to account including the horse’s breed, lineage, previous racing record, and race-day odds to ensure the largest likely return to your twenty dollars. Or just pick based on the horse’s name.

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